Today Pastor Brian takes us verse by verse through Matthew 6:5-15. What does prayer look like from God's view? What does Jesus teach about prayer?
Matthew 6:5 “And when you pray, you shall not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.
The men would pray to be seen and so men would lift them up and say, wow look at that guy he is really religious, man he really follows the law. So their reward was from man and not God which ironically was what they wanted so in a way their prayers were answered. They were praying to impress men and say look at me, glorify me. They were arrogant and full of self-pride. Their hearts were so full of pride they had no room for God who they claimed to serve. All I know is you better enjoy every second of the praise from men because there is no reward in heaven for this kind of prayer.
Matthew 6:6 “But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.
It is a matter of the heart are you praying to be seen and lifted up by man or are you truly wanting a relationship with God. If it is to have a relationship with God, then no one needs to see you except God, and he will talk with you and give you your rewards.
Matthew 6:7 “And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.
Long prayers are good if you are doing it for the right reasons. Prayer is a conversation with your Dad. Not a laundry list of demands. It is listening for your Dad to speak to you as much as its for you to speak to him. You can’t ask God a bunch of questions or list your demands and then run off and not wait for the reply.
Matthew 6:8 “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.
God doesn’t need to hear from us, we need to hear from him. We go to him in prayer so that he can talk to us and show us that he is taking care of us. We ask Him to take care of our needs so we can show Him that He is our God and we need Him. We show Him that our hearts belong to Him and not the world.
Matthew 6:9 “In this manner, therefore, pray:
Our Father in heaven,
This puts us in the correct frame of mind and heart. It tells us this is a special relationship with our Father our Dad, and it puts God in His proper place as the Father of all things in Glory up in heaven his place not here on Earth but above all things in his rightful place in full righteousness that he alone deserves. The Jews would rarely if ever call God Father because it was too intimate but that’s the point it is that intimate. Also, Jesus uses Our Father because it is to give a sense of community we come before “Our Father” as a family.
Matthew 6:9 Hallowed be Your name.
His name is holy and sacred and must always be first before ours. He is God and I am not.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Again who owns everything? God does! It is His Kingdom. In heaven there is no disobedience and no obstacles to God’s will; on earth, there is disobedience and obstacles to His will that we try to put there. Now God’s will can and is done in spite of us trying to block it all the time. The citizens of Jesus’ kingdom will want to see His will done as freely on earth as it is in heaven. We must truly with all our heart, mind, and soul seek God’s will and do it with no disobedience and no hesitation. Have the right attitude towards God’s will being done. Don’t say well I guess you are going to do whatever you want so it doesn’t matter what I say. I’ll do it but I don’t want to. No, pray with a true heart for God’s will to be done. God, you know what is best, you tell me what I need to do to please you and do your work and to glorify you!
Matthew 6:11 Give us this day our daily bread.
Don’t ask for more than what you need, be content with what you have been given and know without any doubt that God has provided all of it for you from his abundance. It is recognizing that we need God every single day to provide us our meals, our air to breathe, every beat of our heart. That we need to come back to him every day and ask him for that day's needs. I heard it said Pray for our needs, not our greeds.
And forgive us our debts,
As we forgive our debtors.
Sin is explained here as a debt that is owed to God. We created a debit by taking glory away from God with our many sins. Each of us has a huge debt to pay. God made man that we would live to glorify God. God gave us a small list of laws or rules to live by and when we break one of those laws, we create a debt that must be paid back. Justice demands that all debts be repaid to God. We have no currency to pay with, we have no way of working the debit off, so God sent His only Son Jesus Christ our LORD and savior to work it off and to pay our debts. He is the only way for us to have our debts forgiven.
And do not lead us into temptation,
God does not tempt us to sin, that is Satan's department. But God does let us go through trials to strengthen our faith and to grow our relationship with Him. The temptation here is referring to a test. It is saying don’t test me beyond what I am capable of enduring. 1Co 10:13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
What does it look like if we pray this how is it put into action? It will mean:
· Never boast in your own strength.
· Never desire trials.
· Never go into temptation.
· Never lead others into temptation.
But deliver us from the evil one.
This is easy to understand protect us from Satan. this is something we need to pray continually on a daily basis. Satan never stops attacking so we must keep him back by asking God to protect us. Protect our hearts and our minds so we don’t follow after him and his lies and deceptions. Satan can and does trick us into thinking we are doing the will of God when it is his (Satan’s) will we are following. It might look religious but if it isn’t biblical then it’s Satan and not God.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.
Again putting God in His right place and recognizing God for who God is.
Matthew 6:14 “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.
Matthew 6:15 “But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
God cuts you a lot of slack. Never forget how much God has forgiven you. So remember that when you are thinking about forgiving your brother or sister.